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Warner Brothers Comments on Lost ‘2001’ Footage

Written by on December 20, 2010 

Last week we ran a story talking about the apparent discovery of seventeen lost minutes from 2001: A Space Odyssey in a salt-mine vault in Kansas. As a follow-up, Warner Brothers has released a statement clarifying the situation regarding the footage, found by /Film.

Their statement is as follows:

“The additional footage from 2001: A Space Odyssey has always existed in the Warner vaults. When [director Stanley] Kubrick trimmed the 17 minutes from 2001 after the NY premiere, he made it clear the shortened version was his final edit. The film is as he wanted it to be presented and preserved and Warner Home Video has no plans to expand or revise Mr. Kubrick’s vision.”

But with this new public interest in these widely unseen seventeen minutes, could we maybe get them as a feature in a future Blu-ray release? Sure, they don’t want to “revise or expand” his vision, but allowing people to see them in a separate context wouldn’t exactly be doing such a thing; I’m not necessarily jumping in anticipation for it, but it would certainly serve as a look at a curious piece of film history.

What I find strange about the footage apparently always being in possession of the studio is that the person who claimed it was discovered is someone who was Douglas Trumbull, the special photographic effects supervisor on the movie. That isn’t exactly a “random” or “unreliable” source. Maybe he was misinformed? It’s hard to imagine he would do this as some form of revenge against the studio for canceling his long in-development documentary about the film.

Wait a minute…

Are you disappointed that this isn’t a big discovery like we all previously thought?

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